Seventh grade was the start of the rough years. I had a teacher who was absolutely the best -- and then he got a job at another school midway through the year. So they got a permanent substitute in.
Substitutes for popular teachers have it rough, and this poor guy was no exception. He tried his hardest. Some of the class warmed up to him. Some of us (me especially) did not. I got busted for drawing a mean portrait of him. He confiscated my art (I was not happy), but it made a return at (where else) parent-teacher conferences. (Thus is the woe of being twelve or thirteen, precocious, and mean-spirited, and still thinking you're right.) I was made to apologize (I felt like dirt) and eventually the contents of the library he brought to share with the class warmed me to him.
I don't think I would have read I'm Eve otherwise, most notably. I don't remember any of the other books that I read that were this teacher's, but that one ... that one may well have saved my sanity (what precious little there is).
I dug about on Google, and managed to confirm that he was still in town, still teaching. The school district website gave up his e-mail address happily enough, though as it's his school address rather than his personal one, he may not get the e-mail until school starts.
This time, I meant the apology. I let him know that I'm not using my art skills for evil anymore. I let him know that I appreciated the books that I borrowed.
It's supposed to mean a lot to a teacher to know that they're remembered and that they've had a positive influence on the students. I hope the e-mail's read in the same spirit it was written.